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Pirates settle for hard-fought tie

By Berry Aldridge, Staff Writer After an up and down season thus far, the Armstrong State University soccer team opened up the 2015 Peach Belt Conference with a 2-2 draw versus the nineteenth-ranked Cougars of Columbus State University Friday, Sept. 18.

These two PBC rivals are no strangers to close games between one another. In 18 meetings

between the two schools, 12 games have been decided by one goal or ended in a draw. In the last

two years the Cougars have had the Pirates number, dishing them two losses in PBC conference

play. After a 16th minute CSU goal, it appeared that the conference-favorite Cougars were headed

toward yet another win.

In the twenty-ninth minute, junior forward Sarah Olin tied the game at one-all when she received

a pass and dribbled past defenders into the box and beat the keeper for her first goal of the 2015

campaign.

“It felt great to tie the game up after they scored first,” Olin said. “We needed the momentum

badly, and Taylor (Valley) played me a great ball, and luckily I was able to shoot over the keeper

for the goal.”

The 1-1 score remained at halftime despite heavy pressure from the Cougar offense. Solid

defense mixed with opportune saves from senior goalkeeper Morgan Luckie preserved the game

for the time being.

Head coach Eric Faulconer rallied the troops at halftime and something he said must have

clicked because just a minute and a half into the second half, freshman midfielder Asa Thorsen

received a beautiful pass from senior forward Taylor Valley and netted a ball in the upper right

corner of the net for her first goal of the regular season. Thorsen, hailing from Skien, Norway,

has started every game for the Pirates so far and has made her presence felt here very quickly.

“It was a really good feeling to score in such a big game and rivalry,” Thorsen said. “It was a full

team effort to finish our chances and score.”

Unfortunately, the CSU offense proved to be too much in the late minutes of the game. In the

seventy-sixth minute, the Cougars beat Luckie to tie the score at 2-2 all. That score would remain

through regulation time, and two overtimes.

The tale of the tape shows a lopsided amount of offense in favor of Columbus. The Cougars

ferocious offense managed 23 shots to the Pirates 8, and 12 corner kicks to the Pirates one.

Luckie out-saved her counterpart 6-2 as well.

“Well once again it was another classic against Columbus State. All our games are important, but

this one always has a special feel to it,” Faulconer said. “We played very well for about 60

minutes, but for some reason nerves set in, and we let them back in it. It’s something we are

going to have to fix and will continue to work on it. Overall, it was a great battle against our

rival.”

Armstrong suits back up to host Belmont Abbey at the Armstrong State University Soccer Field

in a non-conference matchup Tuesday, Sept. 22, at 3:30 p.m.

About The Inkwell (853 Articles)
A compelling news source at Armstrong State University since 1935.

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